Sunday 12 April 2009

The Plough Vol 06 No 05

The Plough
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Vol 6-No 5

Sunday April 12th 2009

E-mail newsletter of the Irish Republican Socialist Party

1. Easter Statement From the leadership of the IRSM

2) Republican Socialist Youth Movement Statement

3) Prisoners Statement

4) IRSCNA Easter Solidarity Message

Easter Statement From the leadership of the Irish Republican Socialist Movement


We send greetings first of all to the families and friend of our dead INLA volunteers and our dead comrades from the IRSP killed for their political beliefs. We send greetings and solidarity to all our comrades currently imprisoned for their political activities.

We remember all those who in the latest phase of the struggle for liberation from the yolk of imperialism fell in the struggle. And we salute the memory of all republicans of whatever hue who died in the struggle for the self-determination of the Irish people.

Easter is a time, when all over Ireland and in parts abroad, Irish republicans gather to pay homage to our dead and to renew our resistance. It is also a time to take stock, to re-evaluate where we stand and to ask where stands the struggle for an independent Irish Republic?

Comrades if truth be told the struggle has suffered a severe set back over these last years. Consider the enemies who face us. A foreign power, a native government of appeasers in the South and in the North a puppet administration in cahoots with MI5, the PSNI and supporting the most repressive laws we have ever seen.

Those, who sold the Good Friday Agreement as an advance for Irish republicanism, sold a lie. It was a defeat.

However it would be a mistake to simply jump up and down and bemoan the mistakes of the past or dwell on what others did or did not do.

Do we, the Republican Socialist Movement learn from our past? Do we the Republican Socialist Movement have a strategy and a determined path to follow? Yes we do!

We have clearly set out our position on the type of resistance we believe should be followed by Republicans in this day and age. That is why we have worked for Republican political unity with other organisations.

The IRSP is part of the Republican Forum for Unity. We encourage all republican socialists to give their full support to the activities of the Forum. Where we can work on issues together we will.

That does not in any way hinder or stop the building of our own Party. We encourage all those who want to change the system join the organisation that that consistently and persistently opposed both imperialism and capitalism. Join the IRSP

We say as we have been saying for years that the road forward is the political road. We do not mean the road to Stormont and the pleasures of administering power for the British. We do not mean the path to the Dail and the pleasures of administering power on the behest of the native bourgeoisie and foreign capital.

We mean the political road of revolution, of the transformation of the two states in Ireland the seizing of power from the capitalist elites, the taking back from the robber barons the land resources, the economic resources and wealth that rightly belongs to the whole of the people on the island.

We recognise that the continuation of partition is a block to the well being of all citizens on the isle. It perpetuates sectarian bitterness turning neighbour against neighbour, stifles our economic well-being and allows the continued social and economic exploitation of the working class regardless of religion or race.

No body should be happy to see peace walls in Belfast City or else where dividing neighbour from neighbour. Those walls are a clear indictment of the failure of British rule. They are an indictment of Stormont rule. They shout loudly that the Northern state is a failed state.

No one should be in the least surprise therefore that the continued existence of a failed state perpetuates a violent reaction. There will always be republicans who are prepared to take up arms to resist. That should surprise no one. It is entirely predictable.

Generations have come and gone and seen violence, communal strife, repression discrimination unemployment, emigration and poverty. History worldwide shows that these things breed the conditions for armed resistance.

But simply wishing it away will not change that. Nor will it be changed by righteous anger, by emotion or by the trusted and tried and failed methods of the past.

Irish republicanism needs a new direction. All around we see the proliferation of splinter groups evolving from what used to be the Provisional Republican Movement. We do not rejoice in division. That is why we advocate and support a broad front policy of –co-operation with others. Renewed republicanism is in the overall interests of the vast majority of the people on the isle.

But renewed republicanism must take into account the wishes and needs of the people
In a time of severe attacks on the living standards of the working people throughout the island Republicanism cannot stand aside and think only of a pure Republic unrelated to the existing social and economic conditions.

We believe that the best way forward for Irish republicanism is to totally embrace the socialist ideal and for Irish republicans to throw themselves fully into the day-to-day struggles of the people. The building of a mass movement of working people to change the world we live in is our best chance of success.

And it needs to be side loud and clear from this and all republican platforms that the political struggle for a Socialist Republic holds no threat to those who see themselves as coming from different traditions.

Part of our task is to convince and reach out to those who we have failed to persuade as to the validity of our beliefs. That is why we in the republican socialist movement will take all opportunities to reach out and influence sections of the protestant working class of the validity of our socialist ideas.

We applaud the tremendous work carried out by our members and ex-prisoners in Teach na Failte in the work they do in working class areas bring working people of differing backgrounds together. That is real republicanism. That’s what Tone, Mitchell, Connolly Mellows and Costello stood for.

That is the Republicanism to take away with you today from these hallowed grounds. We are resolutely opposed to Imperialism. We are resolutely opposed to Capitalism. But, we are resolutely for working class unity and against sectarianism.

Comrades, we have, as a movement faced death.

Comrades, we have as a movement faced imprisonment.

Comrades, we have as a movement faced slander lies and informers and traitors.

Comrades we have as a movement faced the might of Imperialism and we have not flinched.

Nor will we flinch no matter what they throw at us.

We stand today at these graves unbowed and as determined today as when we were formed, to stand by the Socialist Republic.

Victory to the Working class

On to the Republic

(Speech delivered by Ard-Comhairle member Theresa Considine)

Easter 2009 Republican Socialist Youth Movement Statement

On behalf of the Republican Socialist Youth Movement we welcome all who attend here today and thank the IRSP for this opportunity to speak as we pay homage to the men and women of Easter 1916 who so gallantly met the invading forces of imperialism in Ireland with unwavering bravery and purpose.

We would also like to take this opportunity to send our solidarity to the Political Prisoners who languish here in Ireland and elsewhere as well as to the people of Gaza, Iraq and Afghanistan, who like the people of Ireland have suffered so greatly at the hands of a bloody Imperialist war machine.
Nearly a century has passed since 1916 and not much has changed for Irish revolutionaries, our class is still subjected to the will of a corrupt minority, but what better way to set about our task of building a mass revolutionary movement than to meet head on our foreign persecutors and their native accomplices with similar dedication to that shown by the rebels of Easter Week, 1916. Ultimately, the most sincere tribute to those who fought in 1916 will be to take on their aspirations and goals as our own and to set about making them not just a romantic dream, but a reality. That is what we are in the business of, a 32 County Socialist Republic and nothing short of it.

In recent times we have set about the re-organization of our movement, with great strides being made by the dedicated young activists within our ranks. Our movement is growing and our political ideals have never been more relevant, it is now time to push on. Through the Irish Republican Forum for Unity the mechanisms have been put in place to create a broad front capable of harnessing the obvious discontent felt by our class with the political, economic and social status quo. It is only through such initiatives that real change can be brought about. The republican socialist voice has been fragmented for too long, it is unity that will bring our politics to the forefront of the political landscape, it is through unity that real inroads will be made towards our goal.

James Connolly, the 1916 leader, once said that the working class are the incorruptible inheritors of the Irish fight for freedom. It is with this in mind we must progress our politics and overall strategy, immersing ourselves in the struggles of our class and aiding them in their own emancipation. We can never abandon our class, doing well to remember that without the workers themselves there will be no revolution. We here in the RSYM continue to strive to achieve what James Connolly and Seamus Costello seen as there aim.

On this a day, a day where we salute the participants of the 1916 rebellion and the fallen comrades of our own movement, we recall the glorious failures of the past and seek to find a successful way forward. The only way forward is to unite our class to smash the institutions that seek to divide and exploit us, with the establishment of a democratic socialist republic our ultimate aim.


Comrades, Supporters, Families and Friends, we the Republican Socialist POW’s here in Portlaoise Gaol send each of you our heartfelt comradeship. Easter is a sad time for us, but it is also a time of reflection where we pledge to redouble our efforts in rebuilding and strengthening the Republican Socialist Movement.

As we mark the 94th anniversary of the 1916 Rising, we recall with great Honour and Pride, the courage of our comrades who made the ultimate sacrifice in the struggle for a 32 county Socialist Republic.

As you will know, our Movement has come under vicious attack from the forces of Capitalism in both the 6 and the 26 counties. They will not break us. They tried to break us inside these walls. They segregated us from each other, abused our families, turned them away from the Prison and tried to take away our Political Status. They failed. They could not break our spirit. They will try again and they will fail again.

The comradeship on our landing is so strong that we feel we are unbreakable and we are driven by your support and the memory of our fallen comrades from the INLA and the IRSP.

The POW’s wish to take this opportunity to salute the leadership and the Volunteers of the noblest Army of the people, the INLA! We salute the Ard Comhairle of the IRSP and its activists and we send solidarity greetings to all our friends, our Families and our Comrades.

Victory to Irish Working Class!

O/C INLA POW’s Portlaoise Prison


At this Easter time the Irish Republican Socialist Committees of North America pay respect to the spirit of 1916, and in particular the contribution of the Irish Citizen Army and the distinct republican socialist tradition.

Despite the constant lies and slander from the desperate lackeys of the bosses who have tried to convince the world that the rising was sectarian or simply mad, the Easter Rising remains an inspiration to all freedom-loving exploited people. It is a fitting time to remember our comrades who gave their lives for a Workers Republic.

We recognise the Irish Republican Socialist Party as the inheritor of Ireland's incorruptible tradition of working class anti-imperialism and true human liberation.

We are honoured to continue supporting the IRSP and Teach Na Failte, and representing them in North America. We salute the hard work of our comrades who daily build the party in the footsteps of Connolly and Costello. We recognise the courage of the Irish National Liberation Army in continuing their stance and when necessary being ready to defend the working class.

We also note with pride the excellent work done by the IRSP's youth section in
advancing republican socialist and youth politics. The Republican Socialist Youth Movement continues to represent the working class republican socialist tradition throughout Ireland.

We take this opportunity to send our greetings to the Republican Socialist prisoners. They, like our martyred fallen comrades, remain an ever-present inspiration to us in our efforts. We likewise send greeting to all those in Ireland and around the world imprisoned for wanting to live in a better world.

The IRSCNA would like to recognise the hard work and commitment of our friends in the Irish Freedom Committee and look forward to coming together with them yet again to commemorate the hunger strikers of 1981.

We are living in a time of extended and unresolvable crises. A collapse in which the failure of the Good Friday Agreement and St Andrews accords are obvious. No longer are the bosses' agreements serving to cover the divisions and fault lines in the Occupied Six Counties. As long as Britain remains, there will be no peace in Ireland, and no genuinely democratic settlement is possible.

The IRSCNA is proud to report that we are now larger and more active in North America than we have been in years. We continue to proudly serve the IRSP and stand by the republic.

(Irish Republican Socialist Committees of North America)

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Wednesday 8 April 2009

The Plough Vol 06 No 04

The Plough
Web Site
Vol 6-No-4

Wednesday April 8th 2009

E-mail newsletter of the Irish Republican Socialist Party

1) Failed state

2) Visteon -IRSP Accuses Politicians of Evading Responsibility

3) Collapsing all around -Some recent headlines

Failed state

It has not gone away. If anyone thought that the issue of partition was concluded and peace made, they are mistaken. Recently two British soldiers and a PSNI officer were shot dead. Their deaths were a tragedy for their families and regrettable.

The attacks were followed by the usual security response. House raids, arrests, rioting the demonisation of individual republicans and the use of extensive anti terror laws to imprison and interrogate suspects. A media campaign was launched to denounce not only those organizations alleged to be involved in the attacks on the British army and police but all those republicans who desist from giving allegiance to the new institutions of the northern State. Accusations of drug dealing criminality etc and terms like terrorists, fanatics traitors etc were uttered by former republicans who in the past had the same terms used against them. The media went into overdrive denouncing the “terrorists”.(See The Plough vol 6-3 for the definitive position of the INLA on these matters)

All the superficial changes ushered in by the Good Friday and St Andrews Agreements were and are not, enough to hide the glaring contradictions inherent in those agreements. Those agreements centre on the mistaken notions that Britain is neutral between two divided communities that the issue of sovereignty is irrelevant and that sectarianism is the central problem, They are based on the old imperial notion of “divide and conquer”

Sectarianism is not a quaint notion confined to the strange inhabitants of the north of Ireland. The passions angers and hatred in the Shankill and Ardoyne, to name but two areas, are shared across the globe. In many cases the existing divisions between tribes, races and religions became an extremely useful tool for the imperialist powers to exploit and turn neighbour against neighbour.

For centuries the sub-continent of India existed in comparative peace. Under British Imperial rule differences were emphasized and eventually faced with the power of the Indian National Congress the British decided to partition the sub-continent. Today sectarian violence spreads through the whole Indian subcontinent, Pakistan is a failed state in turmoil and Bangla Desh is one of the poorest countries in the world. These are the bitter fruits of Imperialism

The Irish Republican Socialist Party has set its face firmly against sectarianism. Our comrades in many areas intervene, sometimes daily to dampen down sectarian feelings and incidents and prevent the spread of sectarian violence. We make a conscious effort to reach out to those within protestant working class areas to explain our ideas our views and our beliefs. Such outreach work in no way lessens either our socialism or our republicanism. We are resolutely anti-imperialists. Those activities have the unanimous support of our leaderships.

British control of the north is now as strong if not stronger than before the launch of the Provisonal IRA campaign. That may be a unpalable fact for many but it is nevertheless true. The British spend more on intelligence in the 6 Counties than is spent on Islamic terrorism. Relationships between the ruling classes of Britain and Ireland have never been stronger. Britain can continue to recruit and train British soldiers in a part of Ireland. The PSNI has increased recruitment from the catholic population. The state institutions are reasonably stable and there is certainly little appetite for a return to armed struggle.

All of this is not to say that the Northern State is stable. On the contary it is still a failed state just like Pakistan. In every decade from its foundations there have been armed revolts against this state. People have been driven into sectarian mindsets and poverty used to divide people. Symbols such as flags and banners have been used to taunt and provoke people into rioting on a regular basis and every year precautions are taken to prevent sectarian marches provoking even greater rioting. No “Northern Ireland “ is not a stable state and no matter how many times it is said by the media “Windsor Park, home of Linfield FC is not a “national stadium”

Easter time is when Republicans march to honour the republican dead and in a sense renew their commitment to the broad ideals of republicanism. This year the multitude of republican organizations and the ritual denunciations of those who may have deviated the slightest from some form of “pure republicanism” will no doubt confuse and alienate those who republicanism should be attracting to its banner, i.e. the working class.

Irish republicanism historically has always been based on the urban and rural poor That is its natural base. Of course there have been leaders from different classes some of whom went on to forsake their republicanism. Others have used their republicanism to ingratiate themselves into the elite ruling classes. And as always the poor urban or rural have remained poor.

So it could be argued that at this critical point Irish Republicanism is at a cross roads. The recent upsurge in violence would indicate that there are those who want to maintain armed struggle as the main vehicle to attain republican ideals. History teaches us all hard lessons. Only fools refuse to learn the lessons of history. The armed struggle waged by a variety of organizations including the PIRA, the INLA and the OIRA failed to achieve their objectives.

It is no good re writing history to pretend otherwise. It was the mass struggle of the civil rights movement that achieved limited bourgeois democratic objectives – not the PIRA campaign. It was the sound of march feet that undermined the old unionist ruling class. It was something else that gave us first Paisley and now Robinson as first Minister administering British rule. So lets not pretend otherwise.

At the same time the IRSP works hard to unite the republican base and we have engaged in joint talks and political activities with other republicans while at the same time advocating our own views and perspectives.

The working classes are divided. The schools are separated, lives are divided, even the graveyards are segregated. In Belfast, there is a wall that separates one section of working class from another section of the working class. No radical, no republican no socialist no revolutionary can be happy with this set up.

Having benefited from the Celtic tiger and the economic benefits following the ceasefires many are now for the first time enduring economic misery as unemployment soars and redundancies gather apace while the Irish Government imposes massive attacks on the working class. Some how the blame for this is allocated to world conditions or the greed of bankers and investors.

The blame rests with the system that predominates –capitalism. That is the message that needs to be hammered home. No amount of tinkering nor reforming will change the fundamental nature of capitalism. It is a system based on the over-production of goods will change that basic fact. The IRSP have always said in the spirit of James Connolly that the class and national question are intertwined and now is the time for republicans to lead the class struggle.

The occupation of the West Belfast site of Vistion by workers is an example of a class fightback by the workers. The Belfast factory is divided roughly fifty fifty between those from a catholic of protestant background but staffed 100% by working class who are leading the resistance to the shutdown. The Belfast workers set an example taken up by fellow workers in in Enfield and Basildon. If management get away with this, 600 workers at the three plants will be sacked and left on the minimum statutory redundancy pay. Statutory redundancy pay is paltry. Even workers with 30 years’ service are only entitled to £9,000 and most will get far less.

So it is clear that there is a commonality of interest between workers in Ireland and England and of course world wide. Capitalism respects no borders loves no nationalities, destroys native cultures and imposes a consumerist culture in order to maximizes its profits.

In the struggle for national independence in the early 20th century Eamon De Valera famously told the labour leaders “Labour must wait” and that bourgeois unification must come first. Well Labour is still waiting unification is still on the long finger and the workers are still getting screwed. There are too many fake “socialists “ out there trying to fool the workers in order to get and maintain power

No more waiting. No war but the class war.

Visteon -IRSP Accuses Politicians of Evading Responsibility

The IRSP last night accused local politicians of rerouting responsibility regarding the investment and manufacturing crisis in the North of Ireland.

The IRSP Employment spokesperson Sean White, told activists last night that it was easy to blame a global economic crises or credit crunch rather than blame the companies and bankers who intentionally created the crises; crises created in the interest of profit.

The current economic situation may be global; but the loss of jobs locally is a consequence of the Stormont Programme for Government with its dependency on inward investment. Job losses are the result of policies in favour of the employers whilst ignoring the needs of workers.

The long-term needs of the workers were known at Visteon UK's when Stormont was subsidising the profits of its directors.

Sean White went on to say; “there is no “natural” order to the economy. There are no innate, static laws overriding economic behaviour. It is a myth to say nothing can be done. What is termed the “economy” is the way people work, to produce goods and services, and then decide how, where when to sell or use what they produce. People decide rightly or wrongly. It is people who make success, make mistakes. It is people who gamble for profit. It is people who exploit other people. We must move away from treating the economy as if it is a fluke in the weather”

All economists know that recessions and inflation just don’t happen. They are caused. The Banks deliberately restricted the flow of currency; that is a fact, a fact not disputed by the Bankers. Bankers were aware that a restriction of currency gives way to a recession.

The Banks responsible for investment have so far ignored the pleas from the First Minister Peter D. Robinson MP MLA and deputy First Minister Martin McGuiness. On the 16th December 2008 The First Minister Peter D. Robinson MP MLA and deputy First Minister Martin McGuiness and their Executive colleagues Nigel Dodd’s and Arlene Foster today met with the Chief Executives of local banks to explore further initiatives to ease the impact of the present economic downturn on consumers and businesses. To date there has been no response.

Who governs? The Banks or the elected representatives?

The IRSP are asking whatever happened to the billions investment promised to create new jobs in current industries. This time last year $750million was promised for investment in current industries. The investment was announced on the 7th April 2008, by William C. Thompson Jr. Comptroller of the City of New York, who is Chief Investment Advisor of the New York City Pension Funds which currently hold assets of $110billion
A small number of people made decisions regarding how this money was used or if it was used. The IRSP believes that the Irish people deserve answers

Companies are downsizing or closing as a consequence of poor investment.
Of course there is the immediate response car sales are down by an average of 33% but remember in generic terms profit averages 40%. Decreases in profit are compensated with job losses and cuts in labour; in turn increasing the workload on workers. There is no evidence of any major investment outside of construction. But there is evidence that the Banks responsible for investment paid increased bonuses to their Directors

Trans National Companies here are not facing unreserved profit loss. TNCs require extensive returns; not marginal profit.
The reported losses of Visteon UK's are per centage falls in profit. However such profit is not great enough for TNC investment

Visteon UK's reported losses totalled £669m. However in the West Belfast section of the company administrators found no evidence of any losses. According to the IRSP spokesperson there is not a single component produced by Visteon that we cannot match in terms of a nationalised industry.

Different members of the Stormont Government have come out with statements in support of workers who face job losses. But they place no blame on the employers.
There is an illusion that Stormont cannot and does not to interfere in free-market capitalism. An illusion partly created by the first and second ministers when they visit the US with their begging bowls and partly the Programme for Government. They over emphasise no government interference.

In fact, without Stormont with its inward investment policies, TNCs could not exist at all. Government actions and programs have tended to reinforce and stabilize the basic relationships of all Trans National Companies here; guaranteeing private property rights, supplying British and US business (including Fords and later Visteon UK's with needed inputs (like reliable infrastructure and skilled, disciplined workers), expanding markets, and managing social relationships in a way that promotes both stability and profitability. If Stormont can interfere on behalf of the Bosses, it can interfere on behalf of the workers

What was not considered by our MLA’s waltzing about in Stormont and should be, is that workers continue to produce the said components for Ford or any other car company. The Assembly has already stated that
“we are a Growing a Dynamic, Innovative Economy, in a position to invest and build our own infrastructure with a highly trained workforce.”
The factory should be nationalised under workers control. But that would be too radical a step for any of the parties in Stormont already committed to administering the neo liberal economic policies of the pro-business Brown Government in Westminister.

Collapsing all around Some recent headlines

200 bank jobs to be lost in North of Ireland------

Hughes Christenson Belfast 90 Redundancies

Thousands could go in cull of civil service jobs-----
Staff face axe in £200m cuts plan--------
29 workers are to be let go by Arntz Belting in Derry
Wrightbus, has announced plans to make 235 staff redundant.----------
Northern Ireland teachers face compulsory redundancy-----
Translink to axe 75 jobs----------
Further redundancies FG Wilson.------------
Visteon in Belfast 210 workers sacked
Almost 1,000 jobs to go at Bombardier in Belfast--------

Nortel has made 87 people redundant at its plant in Newtownabbey.-----------

One-third of services firms cut jobs in March

Grove Turkeys to lay off 75 staff in Monaghan--------

-SR Technics to implement first wave of 600 lay-offs -------

2% of NI manufacturing base lost in four days---

Central Bank predicts 7% economic decline this year

400 architecture jobs go in year

Government expects economy to shrink 8%

Most severe Budget in decades

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